British Airways-seat refund and poor customer service

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Jun 8, 2018
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#1
In August of 2017 my wife and I, along with three friends scheduled a trip to Israel using BA. We paid 600USD for extra leg room seats (one exit row and three bulk heads). When we took our trip in March of 2018, we only had the exit row on one leg to show for our troubles and expenses. Two of our seat numbers matched up but were not bulk head seats. Our travel agent and us believe it was because BA changed their seating configuration in early 2018. Our return leg from Tel Aviv to London did not match at all and we were further back in the plane. Upon our return, our agent tried to help us get refunds and could not get answers (or even a response from BA for weeks). They told us to file on line, but by then it was too late (14 days after trip but BA took more time than this to get back to our agent, even after follow up emails from her to them.)
I wrote to Alex Cruz directly, with supporting documentation, and even alerted him my letter was coming. I have heard nothing back to date. I eventually did make contact with a customer service person who made me supply our agent indeed could not get a response from BA. She eventually said my friend and I would receive 90 credit for each seat on the let from Tel Aviv to London. My friends have received some compensation (62 per seat) and I have received nothing.
Below I am pasting a copy of my latest email to Mr. Cruz and will attach a copy of the letter I sent to him in April of this year. A copy of the letter I sent to Mr. Cruz was sent to their US Customer Service office at the same time. It was returned 3 weeks later as not able to deliver.
Without a doubt, the worst customer service experience I have had in my entire life. I would appreciate any help or perhaps a real person from BA contacting me. My last email to them is below:
Dear Mr. Cruz,
I emailed your office on April 16 of this year to alert you that a letter, along with supporting documentation, was mailed to you on April 15 from the US. My complaint was about a flight my wife and I took from Chicago to Tel Aviv on March 16 and returning on March 25, 2018. To date, I have had no response to my letter.
My wife and I, along with three friend took the trip together, booked our trip on August 3, 2017 through Robbs Travel and paid an extra 600USD for seats with extra leg room. (One exit row and three bulk heads.) Our travel agent helped us select the seats using the seating chart available for our flight through your web site. Our three friends did the same. (Booking references Xxxxxx, XXXXXXand XXXXXX.)
Of the four legs of our trip, only once did we receive the seats we believed we selected back in August (it was the exit row seats). We are convinced that given the early dated we purchased our upgraded seats that you reconfigured the seating arrangements of your aircraft. This means we did not receive the bulk head seats we selected when we initially scheduled our trip.
Upon our return to the US, we met with our travel agent who believed she could work with BA to resolve our issue. It took her over two weeks and multiple follow up emails to finally have someone in BA inform her the customers needed to file a seating refund request. We were forwarded a link and of course after I completed the request, I was almost immediately sent an automated response that I did not file in time. (No way to argue with an automated response that BA took over two weeks to get back to our agent.)
Because of my earlier email to you, someone from your office finally passed it along to customer service and I was contacted by Deborah Froggatt. When I explained the reason for not filing in 14 days after our return, she asked for emails substantiating this from our travel agent which I supplied. She then asked that I needed to prepare a letter of authorization for my friends to sign indicating I would register my complaint on their behalf. I supplied this as well.
On May 10, I received a call from Ms. Froggatt indicating she could only process a refund for the seats we were denied on the leg from Tel Aviv (the seat numbers did not match what we purchased) and we would be receiving a refund of 180USD. The refund was to take about 10 days and there should be a recording of this conversation. While my friends have indeed received a partial refund, I have heard nothing even thought I initiated the complaint. I checked this weekend with my credit card company and no credit have been provided from BA. I have also sent three emails to Ms. Froggatt for an update but have not had a response.
My friends and I are still convinced, as is our agent, that while the seat numbers matched on some of the legs, we were still denied the bulk head seats we originally selected and purchased.
My Cruz, I understand any company that provides a product or service can make a mistake. The ability to properly correct that error is what separates great companies from not-so-great companies. So far I have spent too much of my time on an issue that I did not create. I am certain this is not an experience you would like personally nor the type of experience you want your customers having.
In closing, I would appreciate it if someone from your office could get back to me regarding my issues and why I have no received even the partial refund Ms. Froggatt discussed. My cell phone is XXXXXXX and my email is XXXXXXX.
Sincerely,
Charles Stanley
Ps-In addition to the letter I mailed to your office on April 15, I sent a duplicate to your US Customer Service address as listed on your home page. It was returned to me on May 9 as unable to deliver.

NOTE: Edited by moderator to remove confirmation numbers and phone number and email of the writer .
 
Last edited by a moderator:

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
6,385
6,443
113
San Francisco
#2
While there's no excuse for such terrible customer service from BA, they are masters at it. I can't figure out why your TA wasn't on top of this so it could have been straightened out before you left. It's fairly simple to track any changes by the airline, and a good agent should have seen this coming. These days, everything needs to be triple-checked regularly. I look at all my upcoming reservations at least once a month, once a week that last month and nearly every day the last week. A change in aircraft or schedule didn't used to be a big deal, but now the less-comfortable seats have to be avoided and constantly checking is the only way to do it.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,966
12,215
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#3
While there's no excuse for such terrible customer service from BA, they are masters at it. I can't figure out why your TA wasn't on top of this so it could have been straightened out before you left. It's fairly simple to track any changes by the airline, and a good agent should have seen this coming. These days, everything needs to be triple-checked regularly. I look at all my upcoming reservations at least once a month, once a week that last month and nearly every day the last week. A change in aircraft or schedule didn't used to be a big deal, but now the less-comfortable seats have to be avoided and constantly checking is the only way to do it.
Travel agents can’t always work miracles with Suppliers that are not customer oriented. We do our best but we sometimes even we can’t get a supplier to do the right thing. BA is one of those.

The agent tried to help and wasn’t successful.

Charles we have company contacts at BA on our Company Contact page. You’ve gone to Alex Cruz when you should have started with Denise McGregor.

Start with her and give her a week to reply. If she doesn’t, move to the next executive and repeat weekly. Don’t add any attachments because it may cause your emails to go into spam.

http://www.elliott.org/company-contacts/british-airways/

Read the information on our company contacts page on how to write first.